Washington, D.C. - The Honorable Michael Froman, United States Trade Representative, and the Honourable Chrystia Freeland, Canada's Minister of International Trade, today made the following statement to update on the status of negotiations toward a new softwood lumber agreement between Canada and the United States:
"The softwood lumber industry is important for both the U.S. and Canadian economies. It supports thousands of jobs in both countries, downstream benefits in related industries and services, such as a sustainable housing industry, and economic prosperity in many of our communities.
"At the direction of President Obama and Prime Minister Trudeau, U.S. and Canadian officials have been meeting intensively on softwood lumber in government-to-government sessions, in meetings with stakeholders, through dialogue with members of our legislatures and state and provincial governments and with respective producers and other stakeholders.
"While significant differences remain between us, this period of intensive engagement has helped define shared goals and explore options for several key components of any new agreement.
"Following this initial 100 days of intensive engagement, the United States and Canada have made significant advances in exploring the key issues and priorities. The United States and Canada are committed to continuing negotiations in an effort to achieve a durable and equitable solution for North American softwood lumber producers, downstream industries and consumers."